(Hartford, Conn.) – Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center has reached a milestone in performing general gynecological procedures using the da Vinci® S™ Surgical System.

In just one year, gynecologic oncologists and OB-GYNs at Saint Francis have performed a total of 245 robotic procedures, making Saint Francis the leader in the community for both robotic hysterectomies and other oncology-related gynecologic procedures.

“The improved outcomes that I see our patients experience is the most rewarding benefit for me in utilizing this new technology,” explains Dr. Jeffrey Steinberg, M.D., Chairman of Surgery at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center.

Saint Francis acquired the $1.4 million dollar da Vinci ® S™ Surgical System robot one year ago and became the first hospital to perform robotic hysterectomies in the Greater Hartford area.

According to the National Women’s Health Information Center, a hysterectomy is the second most common surgery among women in the U.S. Each year, more than 600,000 hysterectomies are performed. Previously, surgeons made a large abdominal incision to conduct the operation. Now, thanks to the latest robotic technology, surgeons at Saint Francis can make smaller, less invasive incisions.

“We continue to utilize this great technology by providing the opportunities necessary for our surgeons to become trained in this latest advancement in minimally invasive surgery,” said Dr. Steinberg.

To perform minimally invasive surgery using da Vinci, surgeons utilize robotic arms and a camera. Through high-tech video imaging, surgeons are given a three-dimensional view of the body’s interior. Tiny instruments attached to robotic arms are controlled by the surgeon who is positioned behind a console. In the end, a patient can experience less pain, less blood loss, and a quicker recovery time. The rationale for this technology: “It is the most precise surgery humanly possible,” explains Dr. Steinberg.

Intuitive Surgical, based in Sunnyvale California, introduced the da Vinci S Surgical System in early 2006.

Founded in 1897, Saint Francis is a major teaching hospital licensed for 617 acute inpatient beds and 65 bassinets. It is the largest Catholic hospital in New England.